Home Buying Process from Beginning to End
1. DETERMINE WHAT YOU CAN AFFORD
Purchasing a home involves one-time costs and monthly expenses. The largest one-time cost is the down payment and it usually represents between 5-25% of the total price of the property. In addition to the actual purchase price, there are a number of other expenses that you might be expected to pay for. Always ask lots of questions.
2. UNDERSTANDING MARKET CONDITIONS
A little research can go a long way! The real estate market is always changing. It helps to understand the market conditions and the impact it may have on you as a buyer.
3. OBTAIN A PRE-APPROVED MORTGAGE
Having a pre-approved mortgage will give you the confidence of knowing exactly how much you can spend on a home before you start looking. Pre-approval will help protect you against interest rate increases while you look for your dream home. If you don't already have one, Megan has an in house mortgage specialist to help you with your mortgage questions and needs.
4. DOWN PAYMENT
Your down payment can be as little as 5%. If the down payment is lower than 20% of the purchase price, the mortgage needs to be insured. Please refer to your Mortgage Lender for more information.
5. MAKING AN OFFER ON YOUR HOME OR CONDO
When it comes time to make an offer, Megan can provide you will current market information and will assist you in drafting an offer which is called an Offer to purchase. Megan prides herself on her excellent negotiation skills. The attention to details and thoroughness is one of her many qualities that sets Megan apart from the competition!
An offer can be a firm offer or a conditional offer;
- Firm offer is an offer to purchase but has no conditions, it commits you to the price you are willing to pay and the date you are willing to take possession, if the seller agrees and accepts you must up hold the agreement.
- Conditional offer is also an offer to purchase but the conditions and dates must be met within the time frame agreed upon in the purchase and sale agreement. The purchase price also has to be mutually agreed by both parties. Once and if these conditions are met and accepted, you will then have a firm offer.
*The seller may accept the offer, reject the offer, or submit a counter-offer. If the seller accepts the offer you are binding to the purchase and sale agreement and conditions if any. If the seller submits a counter-offer than it will be your turn/decision to accept the offer, reject the offer, or submit a counter-offer. Rejected Offer, if the one who is deciding whether to accept, counter or reject the offer can’t agree with the opposite party than you will not have a firm deal and both parties can part ways.
6. HOME INSPECTION
Having the property inspected by a qualified home inspector will give you the added confidence that you've made the right decision. Megan strongly recommends this to her buyers for many reasons.
7. HIRE A LEGAL PROFESSIONAL
A legal professional (Lawyer) is there to provide and look over the legal documentation required to close your new home.
8. LAND TRANSFER TAX
See Megan's chart on land transfer tax tab.
9. Ask your realtor!
It is important to find the right Realtor. A good Realtor is someone that you are comfortable with; someone to look after your best interest!
It doesn't hurt to interview several real estate agents before making that final decision.
TIPS TO REMEMBER
- Book Movers.
- Arrange to have your gas, oil, and electric meters read the day you leave and forward your bills.
- Transfer of any rentals such as water heater or furnace.
- Disconnect phone and cable.
- Make new arrangements to connect the above on the day the sale closes.
- Fill out change of address cards from the post office.
Note; The HST applies to newly constructed homes or substantially renovated properties, but does not apply directly to resale homes. Indirectly it applies to resale homes such as; Real estate Commissions (seller pays), Lawyer Fees, Home inspectors, Moving costs, etc.
First Time buyers of Resale homes or new homes could receive rebates, please refer to Megan's first time buyer tabs and Government sites for more information.